Ellie Mai Williamson, a rising senior at Cherokee, had the chance to intern with Laura Okmin, a veteran sideline reporter for Fox’s NFL coverage.
The Galvanize internship selected candidates based on a written application, and Williamson was one of 28 candidates selected from a pool of 400 across the country.
“I saw it on Twitter actually,” she said, “and I thought, ‘Yeah, maybe I’m too young, (but) maybe something good or positive (can come from it), some feedback. But no matter what, it’s going to be an internship with Laura Okmin.”
As part of the internship, Williamson worked with the player development department for the Atlanta Falcons, and she spent time with this year’s rookie class.
“We worked with the rookies and kind of got a deeper side to those players,” Williamson said. “Like kind of letting their teammates find out some stuff about them.
“We had a one-on-one with one of the rookies, and you have 10 minutes in a breakout room on Zoom, and you had to dig deep with them and get to know who they are. Then, we shared it to the whole group — the other rookies plus Galvanize, Laura and the player development department.”
The biggest takeaway from the experience, Williamson said, was getting to work with other women in the sports industry.
“Sitting in a room with girls and hearing everyone’s stories and kind of learning about each other,” Williamson said. “Just growing, growing in our industry and kind of learning some tips and tricks and just making connections with 28 other women that could possibly, later down the road, help you out.”
Prior to Galvanize, Williamson was an intern for Score Atlanta. She has worked for the company for the past three years, manning the company’s social media accounts for certain events.
“I’m working their Twitter and Instagram and kind of doing that stuff every now and then,” Williamson said. “The Corky Kell Classic is my big one. I do all the lunches, working the lunches, posting on social media, sports analysts. I do interviews and sideline interviews with the coaches and players — anything they need me to do, honestly.”
At Cherokee, Williamson is a three-sport varsity athlete. She is a member of the Alpha Gamma service club and was a part of Cherokee’s 2021 homecoming court.
Set to graduate in 2022, Williamson said her top three colleges are Georgia, Tennessee, and Clemson.
“I’m looking at several SEC schools right now and one ACC school,” Williamson said. “Somewhere I can go for sports networking for my undergrad.
“My front-runner is Georgia, of course, because everyone from there is unbelievable and I would love to get the chance to be a part of that.”